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Comcast Will Let Netflix Onto Its X1 Platform 43

Kara Swisher, reporting for Recode:Cable giant Comcast will allow popular web video streaming service Netflix onto its X1 platform. (Editor's note: both the companies confirmed the move to the publication.) Sources said the deal to be on the cable giant's set-top box would be akin to the arrangement that Netflix has cut with smaller cable operators in the United States and bigger ones across the globe. Netflix also has deals with Apple, Roku and Google's Chromecast; its app is offered on these Internet TV services. It also is embedded in smart televisions.It's an enormous step, given the long and sometimes contentious history between the two companies against a backdrop of increased consumer usage of internet-delivered video. From the report:Back in 2012, for example, Peter Kafka reported that Netflix CEO Reed Hastings was "once again accusing Comcast of violating 'net neutrality' principles by favoring its own web video service over those from Netflix, HBO and Hulu, when it comes to data usage."
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Comcast Will Let Netflix Onto Its X1 Platform

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    First posts!

    Awe, crap.

  • I guess comcast finally realized they will lose when it comes to TV.

  • by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Tuesday July 05, 2016 @12:51PM (#52449183)

    I never understood why Comcast considered Netflix a competitor instead of something like another channel. Netflix has very little that would be playing currently on most cable channels people pay to watch, and it has nothing live like cable can offer... they are very complementary to each other.

    • Or people like me who dropped $100 cable tv service for a Hulu/Netflix/Amazon Prime and can watch most anything out there for less. Cable in general sucks.

      • "Most anything out there"?

        Hulu has the most currently run shows.. but even the higher end commercial free option only has 5 episodes for some shows, right? Not even the full _current_ season, much less previous seasons..

        I would give up having a DVR and even pay slightly _more_ than cable _IF_ it were completely commercial free, AND had a big backlog -- but including current shows. Yes, I do/have watched _years_ old shows I had recorded, then caught up. (I'm almost caught up with MasterChef, after having n

    • I never understood why Comcast considered Netflix a competitor instead of something like another channel.

      In my house Netflix is one of the key reasons we recently dumped Time Warner. We don't need specifically what's on Cable TV as long as what the other services have is still entertaining.

      On a side note, if Time Warner wants us back, they'll have to become more Netflix-like, including on-demand and no commercials. I realize I'm being anecdotal here, but that fits the definition of "Competetion" to me.

      • Unfortunate for the cable company there are a lot more local stations offering streams even if most are only news and weather that's what I tuned into them for anyway and the larger network like cbs and cw have their most recent content up the day after it airs.

        It's not hard to find the content I watched on cable already available on hulu, netflix, and other streaming sources.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      People don't want to pay for 200 channels with nothing on. Hell, if you look at the grumbling at netflix, people don't want to pay for that either once they've binged all the shows they want to watch. There's been rumors of netflix switching to a regular broadcast schedule, largely because of people suggesting that they'll cancel netflix, wait 6 months for them to post the season of whatever show, subscribe again for a month and binge it, then cancel again.

      • But that doesn't mean they'll go back to cable. When Netflix runs out of stuff to watch then I'll stop watching TV. If you can get caught up for 2 months out of the year and spend 10 months unsubscribed and not watching TV, then that's a very good thing and not something to be criticized.

    • > Netflix has very little that would be playing currently on most cable channels people pay to watch

      At one time, Netflix digital content was full of grade A movies instead of the mix of A, B, and C movies it has now.

      Then the MPAA wised up and learned from the RIAA's deal with Apple's iTunes and decided they didn't want to cede content distribution to a single mammoth provider ultimately ending up with DRM-free music sales.

      Netflix tried to split DVD and digital into two companies (Netflix and Qwikster) t

    • There is a notion held by anti-capitalist "businessmen" that any money that someone else makes is money that they lost. They are incapable of understanding concepts like "complementary products" and just thrash around, tearing the market down with them.

  • Will they have NON DRV X1 boxes? or will be forced to pay that DRV fee to get out of iguide hell?

  • So someone blinked, but was it Netflix or Comcast?

    • by CaseyB ( 1105 )

      Both, neither, pick one. It's not a win for net neutrality though.

      Netflix: "Comcast is preferring their own services over others! Net neutrality, net neutrality!!"
      Comcast: "Alright, let's cut a deal."
      Netflix: "Comcast is preferring their own services and ours! All is right with the world! Screw you, video streaming startups!"

      • by swb ( 14022 )

        I think this is right.

        Comcast is just choosing not to fight with one of its harshest critics. Now that they have co-opted them, Netflix won't bitch about Comcast, Comcast can claim they are "fair" and there's "no conflict of interest between data and content" and who knows, maybe they've figured out a way to distribute Netflix content to their DVR subscribers more efficiently than a generic network stream as well.

        Either way, I'd score this as a loss for consumers, a minor win for Comcast and a think-with-y

    • Neither blinked but their eyes got so dried out that they couldn't see what they were signing anymore.

  • If Netflix is paying Comcast anything they all the Comcast customers need to start a lynch mob. They already are paying both services already. In fact we should all complain since the payola would probably be amortized across all Netflix customers and will result in a price hike.

    Whenever someone "reaches an agreement" payola is involved. It may be less that what comcast wants but that is neither here nor there. What these companies do shouldn't affect what I already pay for.

    • Whenever someone "reaches an agreement" payola is involved.

      Not necessarily. In this case, Comcast got another bauble for it's array of X1 services and Netflix probably gets closer to some metric like "Integrate to profitable platforms". If both are seen as advantageous by the respective parties, there may not have been any money that changed hands. That may be unlikely, but it is possible.

      The part I find odd is that you somehow assume that, outside of providing you with the contracted service for the given

  • So this is why Netflix emailed me this long weekend to say my subscription is going up: danegeld.
    • Netflix emailed you this weekend because two years ago, it raised prices and grandfathered you for a whopping two years, and those two years are finally over. I believe, in fact, that's literally what your email notice said.

  • In other words, Comcast doesn't have anything that could compete with it and knows that people will try whatever they can to get away from them if they disallowed it.

    How long until they offer something crappier and slightly more expensive, and cut off Netflix, hoping that people will grudgingly bite the bullet?

    • The X1 Platform isn't a Comcast Product.
      It's a Platform Service being used by cable companies in several countries. (Shaw Cable, Canada being the largest to announce)
      By integrating Netflix, they just make their Cable Platform more enticing for other Cable companies to use.
      And I'm sure Shaw Cable has a wish-lish of features they want on the platform.

  • Let them? um they don't have a choice. Wasn't that the point of the net neutrality fight.
  • This is only the result of the FCC regulation that will force cable operators like Comcast to allow consumers to purchase, connect, and use other Cable TV Boxes. Short of that decision, this would NOT be happening. It's just a move to shore up their argument, which, by the way, they've already lost.
    • I think this is more a fact that they are selling the X1 platform for other cable operators to use. (The big announcement was Shaw Cable Canada, and Cox USA using it)
      Adding a Netflix feature makes it more enticing to other companies to buy this service.

  • They will in all likelihood be getting a commission on each user that signs up to use the application through the set top. They can stream the Netflix content over the cable TV network thereby relieving some of the congestion there. The best part for them is it gives them leverage over the content providers. If networks want to pull their stations off the Comcast system then subscribers can access the content through Netflix and watch it on the same big screen TV they are used to.
  • desperately trying to get Wheeler to give up on opening up cable boxes. Jokes on them, no sports, so I cut the cord.

After all is said and done, a hell of a lot more is said than done.